Aug 29, 2013
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. - The Virginia men's soccer team starts its 2013 regular season Friday evening as it battles future ACC foe Louisville at Klöckner Stadium. Game time for the first-ever match between the No. 20 Cavaliers and No. 10 Cardinals is 8 p.m. The match is part of a great doubleheader with the UVa women's team as the No. 6 Cavaliers face No. 9 Penn State at 5:30 p.m.
Live statistics (GameTracker) will be available on VirginiaSports.com, as well the new Virginia Sports app, which is available free of charge through iTunes.
Tickets are $7 for adults and $5 for youth, seniors and faculty/staff; one ticket is good for admission into both matches. Group ticket orders of 20 or more tickets are $4. Free parking is available in the University Hall lots.
The Cavaliers are ranked 20th nationally in the preseason Soccer America rankings and 25th in the NSCAA coaches poll. Louisville brings a No. 10 national ranking according to the NSCAA and a No. 14 ranking in the Soccer America poll.
2013 Preseason and Introduction
Virginia posted a 2-0 home win over Radford on Aug. 20 in its exhibition opener before playing Rutgers to a scoreless draw last Saturday in Piscataway, N.J. UVa dominated possession in both matches and out-shot its foes, 27-4.
Virginia is beginning its 70th season of men's soccer. UVa is 701-322-102 all-time, including a 167-121-34 mark in ACC play. Head coach George Gelnovatch is beginning his 18th season at the helm of the program; UVa is 247-100-33 during his tenure.
The Cavaliers return 18 letterwinners, including 10 regular starters, from their 2012 side which went 10-7-4 and made the program's 32nd consecutive NCAA tournament appearance. UVa also welcomes a group of 12 newcomers (11 freshmen, one transfer).
Preseason ACC Poll
Virginia was selected fifth in the 2013 ACC Men's Soccer Preseason Coaches Poll, following a vote of the league's 12 coaches. UVa received 106 points in the poll, coming in behind Maryland (142), North Carolina (122), Wake Forest (114) and league newcomer Notre Dame (110).
Noting the Cavaliers
Virginia returns 10 starters from its primary 2012 lineup; forward Will Bates, now with the Seattle Sounders, is the lone Cavalier starter to depart. Juniors Eric Bird (Virginia Beach, Va.), Matt Brown (Charlotte, N.C.) and Spencer LaCivita (Raleigh, N.C.) are back, although LaCivita is expected to redshirt after offseason surgery.
After a baptism by fire as freshmen in 2012, seven sophomores are back for 2013, including ACC All-Freshman honorees Darius Madison (Philadelphia, Pa.), Marcus Salandy-Defour (Kensington, Md.) and Todd Wharton (Glen Allen, Va.). 2012 starters Zach Carroll (Grand Blanc, Mich.), Brian James (Sunrise, Fla.), Jordan Poarch (Middletown, Del.) and Scott Thomsen (Brick, N.J.) also return to the fold for their sophomore seasons. After suffering through an injury-plagued 2012 season and coming off the bench, junior Ryan Zinkhan (Fredericksburg, Va.), a starter in 2011, also returns.
Virginia welcomes in a decorated class of 12 newcomers this year, with 11 freshmen as well as goalkeeper Jeff Gal (R-So., Bartlett, Ill.), who transferred from Creighton after leading the Bluejays to the NCAA College Cup last season. The class was rated No. 2 nationally by College Soccer News in its 2013 recruiting rankings and is highlighted by two of the nation's top recruits, Nicko Corriveau (Potomac, Md.) and Jordan Allen (Rochester, N.Y.).
New-Look ACC for 2013
ACC Men's Soccer takes on a new look this year with the addition of Notre Dame, Pittsburgh and Syracuse; Louisville will join the league and replace Maryland (leaving for Big Ten) in 2014. The league will continue its traditional round-robin schedule, meaning each team will play 11 conference games out of 17 total regular-season games. There will be 10 weekends of conference play; each team also will play one midweek conference match.
The new teams add more firepower to what already was the nation's top soccer conference: Notre Dame was the top seed in the 2012 NCAA Tournament, while Syracuse advanced to the tournament's round of 16.
Louisville posted a 14-6-1 record last year and advanced to the NCAA quarterfinals before falling 3-1 at Maryland. UL went 1-0-2 in the 2013 preseason, downing Lindsey Wilson (3-1) and playing Michigan and Northwestern to draws.
The Cardinals were picked second in the inaugural American Athletic Conference poll. UL had a trio of players - forward Zack Foxhoven, midfielder Marlon Hairston and Daniel Keller - selected to the preseason all-conference team.
Labor Day Special
The Cavaliers are back in action on Labor Day (Monday, Sept. 2) with a 7 p.m. home match against St. John's. The Red Storm are ranked as high as 19th nationally by Soccer America.
2013 Season Ticket Information
Season and single-game tickets are on sale now. To purchase tickets online, visit VirginiaSports.com/Tickets. In-person purchases can be made at the Virginia Athletics Ticket Office in Bryant Hall at Scott Stadium on weekdays between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. Telephone purchases can be made by calling 1-800-542-UVA1 (8821) or locally at 434-924-UVA1 (8821).
General Admission All-Soccer Season Passes are available for adults ($40), Youth/Senior ($30) and UVa Faculty/Staff ($30).